The West Bohemian Symphony Orchestra Marianske Lazne is the oldest orchestra in the Czech lands. Its origin dates back to 1821, when the abbot of the monastery Tepl K. K. Reitenberger issued an official approval for music in the spa. The orchestra’s first conductor was Joseph Schurwonn. The originally small spa-band soon grew to a medium sized orchestra, increasingly focusing on the Promenade and Symphony Concerts.
Since its origin, the orchestra has been performing continuously, even during the World Wars. In 2001, the West Bohemian Symphony Orchestra became an independant non-profit organization, whose founder is the town Marianske Lazne. Many conductors have lead the orchestra, the most famous being Th. Krüttner, M. Zimmermann, A. Schreyer, F. Hellmesberger, L. Kunz and P. Engler. In the post-war history, notable conductors have included J. Soukup, M. Bervid, S. Bogunia, R. Eliška and M. Roháč. Currently, the orchestra has 41 members and performs approximately one hundred musical productions per year. Since 2011 the orchestra is lead by Chief Conductor Martin Peschík.
The core of the orchestra’s season is their series of subscription concerts, which take palce in the Municipal House “Casino”, where concerts are held almost every Friday. They also play in the city theater and in the summer months on the promenade, outdoor concerts which are very popular. The orchestra traditionally plays at the prestigious International Chopin Festival, which has taken place every August in Marienbad since 1959, and they also frequently tour in other Czech and German cities.